Rushlift GSE, the airport ground support equipment subsidiary of Doosan Industrial Vehicles UK, has won a £3.4 million contract to supply and maintain a fleet of 225 vehicles for ASC Handling’s new Gatwick Airport operations. The contract was placed before the COVID-19 crisis struck the industry.

The last of the equipment was delivered in early March, before travel restrictions were introduced
Rushlift GSE

The introduction of airside services at Gatwick by ASC Handling follows the company’s recent signing of an agreement to support charter airline, TUI.

The company said the Gatwick contract is “a significant expansion” of Rushlift GSE’s seven-year business relationship with ASC Handling, as it has supplied airside equipment to the company’s Heathrow operations under a long-term leasing and maintenance arrangement.

The deal to provide the vehicles for Gatwick was negotiated and co-ordinated within a tight time-frame between Christmas 2019 and the deadline of March 4, 2020. The contract includes pushback tugs, trailers, baggage carts, powered belt-loaders, high-loaders and cars. To ensure a smooth ‘go-live’, a team of Rushlift GSE engineers, supervisors and managers, up to director level, were on station throughout the night.

Tim Willett, operations director at Rushlift GSE said: “We were up against an extremely tight deadline, but we were confident that we could deliver on time.

“We have excellent relationships with the key equipment manufacturers. The challenge for our team was to ensure that orders stayed on schedule and that meant making daily checks with the equipment makers. It went right up to the wire, with final deliveries the day before the ‘go-live’. However, the entire team worked through the night to get the job done.”

Maurizio Beni, ASC Handling’s managing director commented: “ASC has been working closely with Rushlift GSE for over six years at Heathrow and we have a very close working relationship with the Rushlift team. We have come to expect very high standards of service support and quality of equipment supplied, and this is delivered consistently. The Gatwick inaugural launch was extremely important to ASC, so naturally we selected Rushlift GSE to support our operational start up and to supply over 200 items of GSE. The launch date went without any problems and Rushlift GSE delivered a superb service to ASC and our customer.”